Announcer: Welcome to Creating Wealth with Jason Hartman, President of Platinum Properties Investor Network in Costa Mesa, California.  During this program, Jason is going to tell you some really exciting things that you probably haven’t thought of before and a new slant on investing, fresh new approaches to America’s best investment that will enable you to create more wealth and happiness than you ever thought possible.

Jason is a genuine self-made multimillionaire, who not only talks the talk, but walks the walk.  He’s been a successful investor for 20 years and currently owns properties in 11 states and 17 cities.  This program will help you follow in Jason’s footsteps on the road to financial freedom.  You really can do it.  And now, here’s your host, Jason Hartman, with the complete solution for real estate investors.

Jason Hartman: Welcome to another edition of Creating Wealth.  This is your host, Jason Hartman.  This is Show No. 97.  I spent several days up in Charlotte, North Carolina, and I’m on my way down to Augusta, Georgia, then Atlanta, Georgia, and then back to Dallas, Texas, and then coming home to Orange County.

I think you’ll enjoy this next interview with Will Crist.  This is not on a real estate topic today or investing topic.  This is on sales.  And you know what?  No matter what business you’re in, if you have your own business, if you’re working for somebody else, if you have children, if you have parents, if you have brothers, if you have sisters, if you have friends, you want to know about how to sell your ideas.  And this is about sales skills, so let’s listen in with Will Crist.  Here we go with the interview.

Interview with Will Crist of Sandler Systems, Inc.
Jason Hartman: It’s my pleasure to welcome Will Crist with Sandler Training.  Will is a trusted advisor to business owners and entrepreneurs.  He helps with company cultures, sales skills, and personality assessments.  I think that would be a fair statement.  Will, welcome.

Will Crist: Thank you, Jason.

Jason Hartman: It’s great to have you here.  Tell us about what you do.

Will Crist: Well, typically, people come to me when they are frustrated because they’re not getting the outcomes that they want.  Their sales people are not picking up the phone.  They’re coming in, telling them that they can’t expect a lot of sales this quarter because, well, you know, market, competition.  We don’t have the right products.  Or they’re asking to reduce the price.  I don’t know if there is anybody out there who ever has issues like that.  But that’s typically when people come and talk to me about it.

Jason Hartman: Yeah, definitely, in today’s economy and today’s commoditized world, I’m sure a lot of our listeners have those kinds of issues.  So this is an important segment and I’m glad I got you on the show because I think everybody sells something, and even if you’re not in business for yourself – I mean we’re all business for ourselves really because we know that there’s no such thing as job security anymore, certainly not in today’s world.  We’re selling our ideas.  We’re selling to our significant other, our kids, or we’re selling directly to a customer or a prospect in the true sales business.  What is the Sandler method?  I think there’s a seven-step system you have.  Can you tell us about that?

Will Crist: Well, I think the first part of the Sandler method is to change the whole notion of what we mean by selling.  I don’t know if this is true of your people or how many people out there for whom this is true, but lots of people believe that selling means getting somebody to buy something from me.  And so my job is to get them to buy from me.

The Sandler methodology turns that on its head.  My job is not to get somebody to buy something from me.  My job is to, first of all, find out what they want.  What kind of issues they have, what struggles are there.  What would be a reason that they would buy anything?  Often, we call that pain.  A lot of that has to do with what kind of outcome do they want to have.

So once I know what their outcome is, then I can pretty quickly figure out whether or not I can help them.  And so once we have an outcome, then we help them come up with strategies for how they’ll achieve that outcome.  When we’re clear about the outcome, clear about where we are right now, then we want to find out what is it that’s getting in the way?  Is it that I don’t know what to say when I walk in?  Is it that I mumble around and wind up doing whatever the buyer wants me to do, and then walk out, not knowing what’s going on?  Do I come in and throw up and all of my pray and spray is what some people do – do I just come in and make a big presentation and hope that people will buy?

So the Sandler methodology begins with figuring out, helping to find out, asking the prospect what do you want?  And from there, we begin to find out what sorts of things we might be able to help.

Jason Hartman: So it sounds like a good, modern consultative approach.  Would that be a fair statement?

Will Crist: Consultative would be good, as long as we understand that there’s a system for this interview.

Jason Hartman: Tell us about this system if you would, if you can drill down on that a little bit, and explain what it is, maybe what the steps are.  I know you talk a lot about controlling the sales process.

Will Crist: I think the real question is helping the buyer to feel like they’re in control, while at the same time having a system that helps us guide the conversation to not necessarily a sale, but a decision because in our system, “no” is okay.  “No” is certainly an okay outcome of a sales call.  What is not okay is, “Let me think it over.  Let me run it up the flagpole.  Let me get back to you in the next couple of weeks” because we know what that means, right?  What’s that mean to you?

Jason Hartman: It’s not good.  It’s a blow-off.  It just means that they’re going to say no.

Will Crist: It’s a “no,” right.  It’s a polite way of saying no.  I don’t want to make you feel bad, so I’ll not say no, but I’ll tell you something and I’m probably not going to follow up on it.  So what we want to do is tell the prospect right up front it’s okay to say no.  Typically, in a conversation like this, a sales person might say, “You’re trying to figure out whether or not it can help you, right?  Well, at any time, if there is something I say or do or you begin to feel something and you don’t think that I can help you, we’re not the people for you, you can tell me no.”  You can, can’t you?  You look like a strong person.

Jason Hartman: I’ll tell you no.

Will Crist: You will, good.  At the same time, you know why I’m here and what did I say?

Jason Hartman: I don’t know.

Will Crist: Well, if a sales person were visiting with you and he had asked to come in and speak with you, and he said, “You know why I’m here,” most people would say, “Well, yeah, you’re here to sell me something.”

Jason Hartman: Oh, okay.  I see what you mean.

Will Crist: Right, so the salesman might say, “A lot of people think I’m here to sell them something.  But can I tell you why I’m really here?  I’m here to find out whether or not I can help you fix those problems that you talked to me about, which was the reason you invited me in.”  Now, I can’t help everybody.  And if by chance, I come back and recognize that I really can’t help you solve those problems, is it okay if I tell you no?  On the other hand, we might find in the next 30 minutes that we have together that there are some things that we want to work on.  There are some things where I believe I can help you and you believe that I can help you.  If we do get that far, does it make sense that we would figure out what the next steps are?

Jason Hartman: Sure.

Will Crist: So could we just plan to take the last five to ten minutes and figure out what those next steps are?

Jason Hartman: Okay.

Will Crist: Now, we have just taken away a “think it over.”

Jason Hartman: So take away the “think it over” early in the appointment.

Will Crist: Absolutely.  What we want to do mentally is we want that person to be thinking, well, there are three responses I could make at the end of this sales call.  I could say yes.  I could say no.  Or I could think it over.  And we want to mentally help them cross out the “TIO” because “no” is okay.  In fact, would you rather have a “no” than a “maybe” and “I’ll think it over?”

Jason Hartman: Probably, because the “no” saves you time and efficiency.  You can move on to the next prospect, knowing that that door is closed and not waste time on a “no” prospect that’s just not going anywhere.

Will Crist: So what the Sandler System is about is not making the sale.  The Sandler System is about finding truth, and finding truth means helping people to make a decision.

Jason Hartman: Either way, good or bad.

Will Crist: Either way is fine with me.  It’s a success when I come out with a “no.”

Jason Hartman: Do you ever think, though, that sometimes some of those “I want to think it over” people really do become customers?

Will Crist: Oh, sure.  Let me tell you what I do with sales people.  In fact, I have an associate who has just begun working with us and he asked that same question.  So I asked him to take next to his whiteboard where he records all of his calls and puts his behaviors on the wall.  I asked to get a little pad of yellow sticky notes and every time you get a “think it over” or “call me in January,” those kinds of calls, write the name down, put the date on it, stick it up on the wall.

Jason Hartman: Your wall will be full of stuff.  That’s why we use software, Will.

Will Crist: When they buy from you, you can take it off.  And so what we watch is all that wall, all those sticky notes, and what do we see?

Jason Hartman: It’s a good visual representation.

Will Crist: We see a whole wall covered with that and eventually people begin to discover that hope, those happy years, that “hopium” that we’re taking, that’s really just shining us on.  So why not say to the person, “That sounds really good.  Why don’t I just put you down for a “no?”  If it changes, because “no” is not “never,” but let’s be honest with each other; for right now, it’s a “no.”

Jason Hartman: Fair enough.  So you’ve isolated; you’ve moved on.  The sales person is not wasting time with someone who’s likely a “no” customer.

Will Crist: Absolutely.

Jason Hartman: Good point.  The seven-step process, I kind of wanted to drill down on that one a little bit more.  What are the seven steps?  I mean this is a unique process that you guys have developed.

Will Crist: Any encounter with another human being begins with what we call bonding and rapport, building trust.  How do you build trust?  If I were to ask the people listening to sit down, take out an 8.5 x 11, and just write down your system for building trust with another human being, what would that be?

Jason Hartman: I would say most of that goes along the line with an initial person of the NLP type, which is the matching, mirroring, pacing, leading, that kind of stuff.  But if they know you, trust comes from keeping promises, in my opinion, and delivering on what you say you’ll do.

Will Crist: Doing what you say you’re going to do.

Jason Hartman: And going above and beyond what you say you’ll do.

Will Crist: And who’s it about?

Jason Hartman: It’s about them, the customer.

Will Crist: It’s all about them and a lot of people believe that it’s about me shining, about me looking good.  It’s about me being technically perfect.  It’s about my track record.  And the reality is it’s about them.  It’s about what they want to do.  And what I ask people to do – in fact, we were working on this yesterday in our weekly two-hour training with people who come from all over Southern California for training – we were working on bonding and rapport.  I said it’s not a matter of finding things that you have in common.  A lot of people think it’s about finding something we have in common; now, we have a bond.

Jason Hartman: Commonality doesn’t hurt, though, does it?

Will Crist: But our goal is to be invited into their space.  Come into my space.  Come closer.  And that’s something that’s granted.  It’s not grabbed.  And so how we do that is being interested, asking questions, and we play a little game, throw a ball back, or we stand up and have people ask questions.  And the first person who answers the question sits down and loses.  How long can you keep questions going?  How can you keep turning the spotlight back on the prospect, the customer, the person that you’re trying to build a relationship with.  So that’s the first step.
The second step is setting the ground rules.  You saw what happened at the playoffs, right?

Jason Hartman: No.

Will Crist: You didn’t see the playoffs?

Jason Hartman: No, I didn’t.

Will Crist: Can you imagine a playoff?

Jason Hartman: Without the ground rules, it would be tough.  Anarchy.

Will Crist: So right at the beginning of every game, the coaches for each team come out and meet with the umpires, and they talk about what’s going to happen, what that big green monster means, what happens when the ball hits that, what happens if the ball goes here, and they agree on the ground rules.  So rather than allow somebody else to set the ground rules, what we ask people to do is come up with an upfront contract.

Jason Hartman: So what would be an example of that, an upfront contract, or those ground rules for a sales person.

Will Crist: Jason, I really appreciate you inviting me in.  Thanks for inviting me in.  Do we still have the hour?  That’s wonderful.  You’re a busy person.  How are we going to deal with interruptions?  I’m turning my cell phone off.  Can we go to the conference room?

Now, you probably saw in your calendar that I was coming, so you probably had some ideas about what you wanted to talk about.  Could you tell a little bit about that?  And we ask the prospect to tell me what’s on their mind.  We might use an NLP, a fast-forward question, like let’s suppose I’m walking out of here, and you’re shaking my hand, saying, “Well, I really am glad that you came because you helped me a lot.”  What would we have covered?  So we get a clear picture of what’s on that prospect’s mind.

The next is “What’s my agenda?”  And my agenda is always to ask questions, so I would ask, “You know, Jason, I’m going to need to ask a lot of questions.  Some of them might make you a little uncomfortable.  Is that okay?”

Jason Hartman: Sure.

Will Crist: All right.  And then our outcome statement:  Typically, in a conversation like this – you’ve heard it before – typically, in a conversation like this, you’re trying to figure out whether or not I can help you, right?  And if for any reason you decide I can’t, you can tell me now.  You will won’t you?

Jason Hartman: Yes.

Will Crist: And at the same time, you know why I’m here.  Out of role now, what I do is I have moved from being a salesperson to being at least a friend, and maybe even an advisor by saying that my job is not to sell you something.  My job is to help figure out whether or not I can help you.  And then we also set up like we talked about.  We set up an outcome.  By the end of the meeting, we will decide either this is not a fit, which is okay, or it is a fit, or we want to have a clear next step.

And then the last step is my biggest fear and I might share that with somebody if for the last three times, somebody had tried to shop my suggestions to them, going out to other people.  I might say my biggest fear is you’re going to take what we do here and go talk to three or four other people.  Is that going to happen?  And I get it out on the table and I deal with that immediately.

Jason Hartman: So you as the salesperson says that to the client.  The salesperson tells the client what their biggest fear is, that they’ll shop them.

Will Crist: That’s what I say as a salesperson.

Jason Hartman: Oh, that’s interesting.  Wow.

Will Crist: Our rule is if there’s a bomb, get on the table and explode it right now.  When do we start talking about price?

Jason Hartman: At the end.

Will Crist: At the end, when it’s way too late, after they’ve gotten all of our stuff, after we’ve told them how we’re going to fix the problem.  When should we be talking about price?

Jason Hartman: Up front.

Will Crist: Up front.  When should we be talking about schedule and time and all of these things, and if there’s an issue, that’s when we do it as “My Biggest Fear.”  So once we do that and we have a clear picture of what their issues are, then we want to ask them about their pain.  So we ask them a series of questions to help them move from a not clear, ambiguous dis-ease to a very clear picture of what the pain is, what they’ve tried to do to fix it, how that’s worked, what that’s cost the company, and how they feel about it.

And then finally, are they committed to making a change.  If they’re not able to answer those questions, if it’s not cost the company anything, there’s no pain here.  There’s no sale, no reason to move forward.  And the reason they’re going to move forward is going to have a lot to do with how the decision-maker feels about his inability to make that change.  And then finally, are you committed to making a change or you think you’re just happy with where it is right now.  That’s Step 3.

Jason Hartman: That’s Step 3.

Will Crist: Step 3 is pain.

Jason Hartman: Okay, so it’s rapport.

Will Crist: Bonding and rapport is one.  Two is the upfront contract.  Three is pain.

Jason Hartman: Discover the pain.  You could say it that way, right?  Okay, that’s great.  So Step 4.

Will Crist: Well, Step 4 is what we said is get money up front.

Jason Hartman: Explode the bomb.

Will Crist: Well, we’re going to find out not what my price is.  We want to find out what, based upon the pain – the pain has a cost associated with it.  So if I could fix these things, it would bring in this much more money to the company.  Or because I haven’t been able to fix these things, it’s cost the company this much.  Now, that’s going to be a fairly large number.  That’s going to be a lot more than I’m going to even think about charging somebody.  Fair enough?

So their budget has to be larger than my cost.  And how am I going to find out their budget?

Jason Hartman: Well, asking them about the pain.  What will it cost them, this problem they’re having?

Will Crist: Right, that’s how we begin to get there, but we have to ask them.  So what have you set aside, Mr. Prospect?  What have you set aside to fix this?  And they probably haven’t –

Jason Hartman: I would assume most people they haven’t really put a number on that.

Will Crist: That’s right, so you begin to help them bracket.  I don’t want exactly, but are we talking about $100,000.00?  Are we talking about $20,000.00, $15,000.00?  What are we talking about?  Budget is not just money.  It’s also time.  How much time do you have that you can either put your people, what kind of resources do you have, what kind of time are we going to be spending to fix this, what can I depend upon on you in doing this?  So getting all of those pieces out there so that we have resources, time, and money, and we can’t move forward without having some clear picture of that.  That’s Step 4.

Next step is how in your company you tend to make decisions like this, Mr. Prospect.

Jason Hartman: So if there were other decision makers.

Will Crist: Are there other decision makers?  How do you tend to make decisions in this company?  Are you the decision maker?  And what do they generally say?

Jason Hartman: I don’t know what they generally say.

Will Crist: “Oh, yeah, I’m the decision maker.”

Jason Hartman: Sort of an ego thing.

Will Crist: And you don’t need any help?  You don’t need any help at all?  And that begins to soften them up and helps them to understand that they really are going to be talking to other people, in which case, before I made my presentation, who would I want to have in the room?

Jason Hartman: All the decision makers.

Will Crist: So that would be what I’d be doing, is how do we get all of those people into the room.  And once we identify who those people are, before I talk to you about the solution, which I promised back in the upfront contract, because after the upfront contract, we have three steps of qualification:  pain, budget, decision.  And without any one of those three, we’re not going to move forward.  If you have no pain, if you have no budget, or you can’t make a decision, is there any reason for me to make a presentation?

Jason Hartman: No.

Will Crist: We call that pre-consulting.  So after I have those three, and I’m convinced that they qualify for a presentation for a solution, then I’m going to ask something like – this is what we call the ultimate contract.  I’m going to ask something like, “So, Jason, if you believed, after I make my presentation next week, where we’re going to have the six people who are going to make decisions about it, if all of you believe that I can fix your problems within in your budget, what happens next?

Jason Hartman: So the prospect there is saying, “Okay, well, we’d do it.  We’d buy it.”

Will Crist: But not right away.

Jason Hartman: I don’t know.  Maybe they are; maybe they aren’t.

Will Crist: Well, that’s what I need to find out.

Jason Hartman: You’re smoking out the timeframe for a decision.

Will Crist: Absolutely.  Oh, yes, we’d buy it right away.  Well, that’s my contract.  Then I walk into the room with that agreement, that if, at the end, they’re convinced – not that I could convince them – but if they’re convinced that I can fix those problems within their budget, which means my price always has to be less than their budget, they’re going to make a decision.  And that’s all I’m really asking them to do.  Not to necessarily buy.  They’ll say yes, we’ll buy.  What I want to come away with is a decision one way or the other, and most often, that decision, by this time, is going to be yes, if it’s within my budget.

So the next step, Step No. 6, is making the presentation.

Jason Hartman: Before we go into the No. 6 and 7 steps, I want to just diverge for a moment.  Can you make any distinctions for us, Will, between business-to-business sales and business-to-consumer sales, and even if you want to add a third tier to that, I’ll call it interpersonal sales in the sense that we’re not really selling something; we’re just trying to get someone to buy into our thinking, whether it be your wife or your kids or whatever it is.  Kind of three things there:  business-to-business, business-to-consumer, and then interpersonal sales.

Will Crist: Well, let’s suppose you call all of those sales.  So my question to you would be why do people buy anything?

Jason Hartman: Because they believe it will improve their situation.

Will Crist: For their own reasons, right?

Jason Hartman: Right, for their own reasons, definitely.

Will Crist: For their own reasons and then they believe that it will take away a pain, give them pleasure, something like that.

Jason Hartman: What’s in it for me?

Will Crist: So what would be the first thing that I would want to know from them?

Jason Hartman: What they’re looking for, what their outcome is.  We went over that.

Will Crist: What do you want?  So would it make a difference whether this was a company or a consumer or a relationship that I had?

Jason Hartman: So same seven steps, same thing.  And then one other distinction I wanted to ask you about – any tweaks or differences between small ticket sales and large ticket sales?  For example, in a business-to-business environment where someone may be doing really large ticket sales, multi-step implementation plans, payment schedules, or does it really always just come back to these seven basic steps?

Will Crist: I think it comes back to the seven basic steps.  Now, what we do in our ongoing incremental training, which is a step at a time – you’re familiar with Jeff Olson and the Slight Edge, right?

Jason Hartman: Yes.

Will Crist: And he says it’s no big breakthrough.  We’re not looking for quantum change.  So sales training is not quantum change.  We don’t have one big two-day event with a lot of rah-rah and expect that that’s going to lead to significant change.  So our system is small, incremental steps over a period of time toward a worthwhile goal.

Jason Hartman: Inch by inch, anything is a cinch.

Will Crist: That’s correct.  And so what that means is part of the process is how do I take this system, which David Sandler called “The Sheet Music,” and how do I play it on my instrument?

Jason Hartman: Good analogy.

Will Crist: So that has to do with my marketplace.  That has to do with my customers.  That has to do with me.  And all of those things have lots of variables, so what we want people to do is want people to know, well, you can use NLP terms.  We want them to be able to pick up is this an auditory, is this a visual, is this a kinesthetic person?  We want to know where they fit on what we call the “DISC Model.”  Are they dominant, are they a steady relater, are they interactive, or are they a calculator?  And once I know these things, then I begin to understand what it is they want.  How will they be sold to?  How will they make a decision to buy?  Or how will they make a decision to do what I want them to do?

Jason Hartman: We have a couple more steps left, but here’s another little tangent here.  Do you think there is any particular type of person that is more or less difficult on that DISC profile, for example, and if you want to maybe just explain to the listeners?  Some may not know what DISC is.  But are some easier, like if you want to sort of group your prospects, which would be the more difficult ones and the easier ones?  First of all, what is DISC?

Will Crist: DISC comes from Carl Jung’s work over the last 50 years.  It’s been massaged into a very simple, short test that can help people discover whether they tend to be dominant and make decisions quickly, or whether they are interactive, tend to do a lot of talking, have a lot of fun, whether they’re steady relaters, going to be there forever, supporting, or whether they’re calculators.  You tend to find a lot of these in CEO decision-making positions.

You find a lot of I’s in sales positions.  That glad hand, well-met person, who has a lot of talking, that smooth talker, tends to be an I.  The steady relaters are people who are going to look out for your needs.  They’re the people who are going to be try to figure out what it is that you need, what you want to have happen, and they’re going to be there for a long time supporting you.  The Calculator is the typical CPA, bean counter, a person that needs a lot of data, a lot of data, to make decisions.

Jason Hartman: So that’s the person that I would say is the most difficult customer, if I have to pick one, because I have found just over the years in sales myself, I have that a lot of people say, for example, lawyers are tough customers.  I don’t think lawyers are tough customers at all.  I like lawyers.  I think they’re great.  I think the tough customers are engineers.  It’s not because I’ve always been a very data-based, empirical type of salesperson, with a lot of proof and a lot of evidence and a lot of data and charts, whatever you need to know.  But engineers just seem to want to find a reason not to do anything.

Will Crist: They are certainly people who are going to take a long time to make a decision.

Jason Hartman: And I think, a lot of times, I hate to say that’s really to their own peril.

Will Crist: Well, absolutely, but let’s take a look.  Let’s take a look.  If you looked at the DISC configuration, if you had a square and it was divided in four parts, one line down the middle, up and down, one line across.  In the left upper corner, you have a D.  On the right lower corner, you have an I.  On the lower left corner, you have an S, and on the upper left corner, you have a C.

All right, now, we find that I’s have very difficult times relating to Cs, across that angle.  Have you thought about what you are?

Jason Hartman: I’m probably a D or an I, or a little of both, I guess.

Will Crist: Yeah, so when you tell me I have great difficulty working with Cs, that’s not a surprise.  That’s not a surprise.

Jason Hartman: So who finds it easy to work with Cs, other Cs?

Will Crist: Let me ask you.  What kind of personality does the prospect get from the sales person, from the professional sales person?

Jason Hartman: Well, they get their own.  Maybe they get their own because they’re relating.  But you just kind of said that commonality wasn’t a big rapport thing.

Will Crist: No, I’m not saying what we have in common, like we’ve both been to Aruba.  What is important is you talked about matching and mirroring.  So if I’m matching and mirroring a C, I’m going to listen for what kind of data that person wants.  So they’re going to get from me the personality that they need to be able to make a decision because if I leave that conversation without them having made a decision, I’ve done a disservice.  It’s not a bad prospect.  It’s my inability to have a strategy to help them get clear about what they want to do and supply for them what they need.

Now, Ds tend to make decisions very quickly.  They’re very demanding.  Cs, like you said, need a lot of data and they need to figure out a way for them to measure the relative return on investment and how all those things are going to happen.  Helping them think through that helps them to get to the place where they can make a decision.  So yes, the question, what kind of personality does the prospect get, whatever they need.

Jason Hartman: So the salesperson, to some extent, if they’re a real pro, they have to be a bit of a change agent.  Well, they’re a change agent, of course, but they have to be a bit of a chameleon.  Is that a fair thing to say or that sounds kind of negative?

Will Crist: No, they don’t change who they are, but they begin to discover what strategies are going to be helpful because David Sandler said something I found very interesting.  He said, “All sales is a Broadway play written by a psychiatrist.”  So you have to do a lot of acting.

Now, let me ask you, Jason, between you and me, just between you and me –

Jason Hartman: You, me, and all the other listeners?

Will Crist: Well, it’s between you and me.  When you sit in front of a typical investor here, are you in love with all of them?  Are these people that you want to go out to a social event with?

Jason Hartman: Not always; sometimes.  It depends.

Will Crist: Yes, but there are people that you don’t.  So what do you do?  Don’t you act interested, act like you care?

Jason Hartman: Well, there’s an old saying that’s interesting about that and I always liked this quote.  “We become what we pretend to be.”  And so it’s not really always a matter of acting; it’s a matter of putting yourself into that person’s shoes and really relating to them in a real way.

Will Crist: And learning the skill of saying, oh, I know what type they are; I know what they need from me to feel trusted, to feel cared for, and I’m going to do that.  And that’s one of the things that people learn over a period of time.

Jason Hartman: I mean that was an interesting corollary to Earl Nightingale’s famous statement, which I love, “We become what we think about.”  And then much later, I had heard someone else say, “We become what we pretend to be.”  So, interesting.

Will Crist: So if I begin to pretend that my job here with a prospect is to help them rather than to sell my stuff, I’m going to begin to do that.  And if I begin to learn that there are a variety of tools and skills sets that I can bring to bear on helping that client, that’s where we have different roles that we play to help people.

Jason Hartman: In the interest of time, Will, let’s go over the rest of those steps.

Will Crist: How much time do we have?

Jason Hartman: A couple more minutes.

Will Crist: So we have the presentation and what are we going to talk about in the presentation?  What do you think?

Jason Hartman: We’re going to talk about filling their needs.

Will Crist: Absolutely.  It doesn’t matter how long we’ve been in business.  It doesn’t matter what the marketing department wants me to say.  It matters how well I can calibrate my delivery, my solution to their needs.  And before I move, I’m going to have each of those needs up on the board and I’m going to ask them where they want to start, and then I’m going to show them in great detail how I will solve that.  And I’m going to ask them if they believe that will be the solution.  If they don’t agree –

Jason Hartman: So I would say that’s a “tie-down.”  Ask them if they think it’s a solution.

Will Crist: It’s an agreement.  It’s just an agreement.  If you believe that we can solve this, I want to put a checkmark over there, 100 percent okay.  That’s done.

Jason Hartman: So we’ve come to a conclusion on that point.

Will Crist: On that point and I work through every point, and I ask them to lead me through.  And at the end, I’m going to ask them on a scale of 1 – 10, where are you?  Do you think we can solve this for you?  And if they’re not above a seven, if they’re not a ten, we’re going to go back and keep working until they get to a ten.  Or I recognize it’s never going to work for me.  Now, some people may only give a nine and that’s their top score.  I can understand that.

Jason Hartman: Right, because nothing is ever a ten.

Will Crist: And then, finally, they’re going to say, well, what’s the cost of this?  We already know what the parameters of that cost are going to be.

Jason Hartman: It’s within their budget.

Will Crist: It’s under their budget.  Not the same, but under.  So there you are, sir.  We’ve solved all of your problems.  You believe we can solve them.  It’s within your budget.  And the final close, are you ready?  This is the only Sandler close that is ever possible.

Jason Hartman: Now is this Step 7?

Will Crist: No, this is Step 6.  This is the close.  “What would you like me to do next?”

Jason Hartman: That’s pretty lightweight.  Yeah, that’s good.  It’s a consultative approach and it’s not manipulative, so that’s okay.

Will Crist: And then help me; I’m confused.  You believe we can solve the problem.  It’s within your budget.  What did you say you were going to do?  Make a decision?  What would you like me to do?

Well, let’s suppose they said, “Fine, here’s the agreement.”  Now, have you ever had someone sign an agreement and then within two or three days, call you up and say, “Can you hold up on that deal?”

Jason Hartman: Oh, sure.  People get buyer’s remorse.

Will Crist: So you have buyer’s remorse.  Have you ever had anybody who accepted a deal, they call back in a couple of days, and they say, “You know, Jason, that’s really fine, but I had somebody else who came up with a better deal for me?”

Jason Hartman: Yes.

Will Crist: So what we want to do in Step 7, which we call a post-sale, is we want to deal with buyer’s remorse on the table, and we do that by saying, “Jason, I really appreciate you doing business with me, but remember when we talked about we could only deliver it in blue and you wanted green, but you kind of gave in on that?  Are you sure that’s going to be okay because we can tear this up right now if you want to?”  I want to give the contract back to the buyer and find something, some small piece where they had to give in, and ask them if they’re really committed because I want them to have the chance right now to back out of the deal because when do I want to deal with that, now or at 3:00 a.m. on a phone call that they left because they knew I’d get voice mail?

Jason Hartman: Agreed.

Will Crist: So it takes a lot of courage for people, a lot of what we call backbone, to give that contract back and offer to tear it up.  And secondly, we want to rehearse them.  “Now, Jason, you know that you’re changing vendors now for your copy machine.  You know what that other company is going to do next week when they hear that you’ve given me the contract, right?  They’re going to be over here.  They’re going to be dropping prices.  Whatever you want, they’ll do for you.  So when that happens, what are you going to say to them?

Jason Hartman: So you ask the client what they’re going to say.

Will Crist: You rehearse the client.

Jason Hartman: That’s really good.  Wow.

Will Crist: You rehearse the client.  What are you going to say to them?  And the client generally says, “Well, I’ve already made the decision.  I’ve gone with somebody.”  But they’re going to drop the price.  You’re going to be paying me more than them.  Are you sure you want to do that?  And you’re helping the client to get clear about what their decision is.

And then, finally, wouldn’t it be nice if we didn’t have to do all that prospecting and we had a way of getting referrals right up front?  So our system is when we’ve concluded business, “Jason, I really appreciate you doing business.  I’m going to take very good care of you because you know if I don’t, you know what happens, right?”  What happens?

Jason Hartman: I go somewhere else.

Will Crist: You won’t be a long-term client.  Some day, six or nine months from now, you’re going to look back on this conversation and you’re going to say that was a great decision that I had.  Now, when you do, when you begin feeling that way – not until then, Jason – but when you do, I want you to feel comfortable introducing me to six or seven people like yourself.  When you feel that way, will you be comfortable doing that?

Jason Hartman: Sure.

Will Crist: Absolutely.  So what am I going to do six or seven months from now?

Jason Hartman: Ask for more referrals.

Will Crist: I’m going to come back and I’m going to say, “Are you comfortable now?  Did we do what we said we were going to do?  Are you happy with what I did?  Is this the time now for you to introduce me to some people?”  Now, I didn’t say refer.  I didn’t say give me a phone book of lists.  I didn’t say give me a name.  I didn’t say call and tell them I’m calling.  I said introduce, which means we’re going to sit down and talk about where you were, where you are now, and why you think that I might be helpful to your friend.  Is that helpful?

Jason Hartman: Yeah, sure it is.

Will Crist: So there’s our system.

Jason Hartman: Excellent, excellent.  Well, Will, it’s been great having you on the show.  Thank you so much for sharing these wise tidbits with us and where can people find out more about the system?

Will Crist: They can find out more about us.  They can go to  They can call me at (949) 486-0733.  They can email me at

Jason Hartman: And Will, any words in closing?

Will Crist: We have lots of material that we would be happy to share with people, be happy to talk with anybody that wants to talk more about this.  And Sandler, by the way, is 226 offices around the globe.  Our fastest growing areas are in the Middle East, in Eastern Europe, and in Southeast Asia.  So we’re a global company.  We’ve trained about 15 million people over the past 40 years, so I encourage anybody to give me a call and see if there’s any way that I can help them.

Jason Hartman: Great.  Will Crist, thank you so much for joining us today.

Will Crist: Thank you, Jason.

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Duration:  44 minutes